That Kidney Has To Go Where?
Our meeting with Dr. Healey went well. We heard all about how they are going to jam a 9-11 cm long kidney up underneath Isaac's liver and behind his peritoneum and intestines. I guess it's going to be more protected than I thought. That's good because otherwise this kid is going to be wearing his kidney shield even when he sleeps. Right now Isaac's favorite sound to make is that of a Mari Warrior and he purposefully tries to head dive off the furniture, sometimes backwards.
I wasn't joking about the kidney shield. Isaac will get fitted for a plastic shield that wraps around the abdomen on the side of the transplant to protect it while he plays (or participates in some benign activity that Isaac could get injured doing when his genetic disposition and personality are factored in.)
Anyway, Dr. Healey also reiterated some of the risks of the surgery that we already knew. First, the grafted organ may not start working right away. Children's has only had one child in the last three years when this happened, but if it does happen Isaac would have to be dialyzed until the new kidney started working. Because Isaac is small, they will probably cut into the peritoneum to do the transplant, leaving us with hemodialysis. Second, they are going to have to keep a close eye on his bladder to makes sure it can suddenly tolerate high volumes of urine. At this point, Isaac only makes about 1 to 3 oz. of urine a day. After transplant to keep the new kidney hydrated, Isaac will need at least 64 oz of water a day. Third, there is a risk of intestinal blockage because the transplant is squishing them. This can require additional surgeries to shift the intestines around.
When he finally got around to talking about whether Tim's kidney would fit in Isaac, he said that he had stuck kidney's from bigger dad's into smaller kids than Isaac. Isaac is bigger than Dr. Healy thought and Isaac's belly is all stretched out from the dialysis. And, men's kidney's are generally only 1-2 cm bigger anyway.
At this point, I am wondering what all the fuss has been about then. The UW would not let Tim schedule any more of his testing until we got the okay from the surgeons on Tim's kidney size. To top if off, the UW had not yet sent over the ultrasound results yet. Arrg. But impressively, Dr. Healey was on it immediately. While we were still there, he called every single person in the UW transplant team until he finally reached someone. Turns out Tim's kidney is only about 1 cm bigger than mine at 10cm long.
Today, Tim scheduled all of his tests and appointments today. Most of them will be on Friday, October 4.